I don’t know about you, but I have a handbag like Mary Poppins! Everything I could possibly need when I’m out and about is in there. It’s all very convenient but I do find my cheque book gets all dog-earred and messy, which bothers me a wee bit. Solution? This very simple and cute chequebook cover!
My Friendship Star Quilt top has been finished for so long (since last March!) but I’ve been putting off basting and quilting it. This is for several reasons, mostly I’ve been intimidated by it’s size, and by the fact that it will be the first quilt I’ll machine quilt!
It has been niggling at me for a while, and so I made a sort of New Year’s Resolution to finish it in the first half of 2014. I needed a free day when I had nothing else on, and had my son in day care, for basting. The reason? Well, I baste on the floor of my apartment, it takes several hours to do, and basting and toddlers running around don’t mix! 🙂
Anyway, I decided to pin baste, because that’s what my Quiltmaking for Beginners book advises if you’re machine quilting. I’ve always thread basted previously, so this was much quicker because I didn’t have to pin first. I still ended up with sore muscles, but the finished quilt will be worth it! I plan to quilt it in the next fortnight.
One question, how far apart do you put your safety pins when basting? I’m not sure I used enough.
In the last few months, I’ve posted about my new hand-sewing project (here and here, if you are interested!). I’ve put the flowers I’ve made so far together, with a white hexie border, and some mini yellow flowers between the big flowers to cut the white space a bit. I think they brighten the quilt, don’t you?
I’m happy with how it looks so far, and maybe I’ve gone a bit crazy, but I’ve been having so much fun that I’ve decided to make it into a full king size quilt! 🙂
Sorry for the lack of posts recently, I’ve been feeling a bit blah about my blog and life in general, I think it’s the winter blues! I’m trying to give myself a virtual kick in the bum to get back on the go again!
Here is part 4 of my Block of the Month series. The first month I made the “Anvil” block, and the second month, I made a block called “Barbara Frietchie’s Star”, and in the third month, I tackled the “Brown Goose” block. This month, I made the “Cactus Basket” block, which is another traditional American quilt block.
This month, I found accuracy was a lot easier to get. I like the way half square triangles can be used in so many blocks! If you use HSTs, what is your favourite pattern to make with them?
I spoke to you all a couple of weeks ago about my current hand-sewing project – a paper-pieced Grandmother’s Garden quilt. So far I have made five flowers. It’s so relaxing and much much less awkward than paper piecing friendship stars (no problems with points, and no holes in the centre!).
As far as I know, most grandmother’s garden flowers have just one “layer” of petals, but some have two and I quite like the possibilities that gives for playing with colours. Also, it makes the flowers bigger and means fewer are needed to finish a quilt!
I like my flowers so far but I will be also using warmer colours for a bit of balance, they are a bit “cold” in my eyes so far! Do you prefer “warm” or “cold” colours when crafting? Or does it matter at all?
Today I’m going to tell you about the third quilt I ever made. It’s a baby quilt that I made for my nephew who was born in 2011. I followed the Moda Bake Shop “Stacked Coins” tutorial with a couple of changes (I only used four columns of coins) and used the “Happy” line of fabric designed by My Sister and Me.
This was made completely by hand, all the piecing, quilting and binding so it really was a labour of love! For the quilting, I stitched in the ditched around each “coin”, and filled the white space with wavy quilting.
As with every project I do, I learned a lot. On the negative side, I learned that you don’t pre-wash pre-cut fabrics as this changes the size, so it was a bit more tricky that it should have been to sew the coins together. On the positive side, I learned how to do continuous binding as well as how to properly mitre my corners!
The toddler I gave this to still uses it so I’m happy! 🙂
I finished my last handmade project a while back (my crochet butterfly and heart project – there’ll be a post shortly!) and so I was thinking about what I could start as a new wireless do-in-front-of-the-tv project. I came up with hexagons! I’ve decided to make some sort of Grandmother’s Garden quilt. I say “some sort” because I still don’t know what size it will be or where I’ll use it.
As with my Friendship Star quilt, I used Quilt Patis as my templates. I know they are a bit pricey and hard to get but I don’t trust myself to cut my own paper templates! So far I’ve made 100 hexies, more or less. The fabric I’m using is all fabric I have in my stash, I’m trying to be economical and not buy anymore until I’ve done at least a bit of stash-busting! 🙂
Sorry for the lack of posts recently, Between travelling Ireland on holidays to visit my parents, and the “rentrée” this month with my son starting crèche, I’ve been pretty busy! Also, my son is getting a lot more active so it’s harder to find time to craft!
Here is part 3 of my Block of the Month series. The first month I made the “Anvil” block, and the second month, I made a block called “Barbara Frietchie’s Star”. This month, I tackled the “Brown Goose” block. It apparently was so-called because it was originally made from brown calico fabric. This block is also known as the Double Z block, or the creepy Devil’s Claws block.
The first two months of this project I had some problems with my points and accuracy. Now this month my block is not perfect but it is much improved. There are a couple of reasons for this: firstly, instead of just trying to get a 1/4″ seam, I actually drew around my template and followed the lines. I know that’s more time consuming but it does make a difference. Secondly, I TOOK. MY. TIME! Really it was important for me not to rush: this isn’t a race, if I skip a month, I’m not going to stress about it. So I’m happy enough with the results.
How do you improve your accuracy when piecing blocks?
The second quilt I ever made was this “Trip Around the World” quilt, which I made for my sister’s birthday back in 2011. Her favourite colour is purple, and I wanted to work with solids so this was an easy choice to make!
It’s lap-quilt size, made with cotton solids, and Aborigine Dots fabric on the back. It was completely hand-pieced and hand quilted, and I JUST finished it in time for my sister’s birthday. I found this a lot easier to make than the first quilt I made, I had learned a lot with that process and was able to side-step some of the problems I had there.
I think this may actually be my favourite quilt project, I really wanted to keep it for myself! Do you have trouble giving away the things you make?
I got a little behind with my Block of the Month blocks. So just between you and me, let’s pretend June didn’t happen, mkay? 🙂 Last month I tackled the “Anvil” block, and this month, I made a block called “Barbara Frietchie’s Star”.
Barbara Frietchie was a woman who lived in Frederick, Maryland and during the Civil War she was a Unionist supporter. She was celebrated for the fact that at the age of 95, she waved a Union flag from the window of her house to annoy Stonewall Jackson’s troops as they passed by. The patchwork star got it’s name in the 1930’s when Helen Rockwell Adams of Needlecraft Magazine visited Frietchie’s home, saw the block in a quilt on Frietchie’s bed and gave it the name. (Source: http://civilwarquilts.blogspot.fr/2011/06/26-barbara-frietchie-star.html)
Making this block had taught me that I need to be a lot more careful when I’m cutting my pieces, and with my seam allowances, particularly when there are lots of triangles involved, I’m not terribly with my points! My next block will be better, I promise.